Durban South Africa

dbnModern city, stunning beaches, busy port, these descriptions don’t usually conjure up images of Africa, but then, that continent is a place of wildly fluctuating economies and Durban on the east coast of South Africa is a city that is both very liveable and unique.

In fact, Durban is the largest city on Africa’s East Coast. With a population of over three million it is a very cosmopolitan and sophisticated place, ultra modern yet still very much African to its core.

As the major city in KwaZulu-Natal Province, Durban is located on Natal Bay and is fortunate to enjoy a warm sub-tropical climate whilst boasting a coastline full of beaches that are washed by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. For those reasons, Durban is a popular destination for both domestic and international visitors, and it has plenty of attractions to keep the visitors amused.

The city is separated from the surf by a long ribbon of sand that is called the Golden Mile. One of the most popular spots for swimmers and surfers is South Beach, which is patrolled by life savers. The whole beach is protected from sharks by an offshore shark net. Other popular beaches for surfers are North Beach, Dairy Beach, Bay of Plenty and Snake Park.

There is also a promenade which runs alongside the beach, for those who enjoy a casual stroll, or a pleasant bike ride. The promenade is also home to numerous restaurants, pubs, hotels and shops. At one end is the Art Deco-inspired Suncoast Casino and Entertainment World complex which, apart from the casino, boasts many restaurants, bars, cinemas and even has its own semi-private beach that is so good it is rated as one of the top 3 beaches in South Africa.

At the South Beach end of the Golden Mile is the uShaka Marine World, which, with 32 separate tanks totalling 17,500 cubic metres of water is one of the world’s biggest aquariums. As well as massive tanks, which combine a large variety of creatures, including many sharks, there are dolphin, seal and penguin shows. As well as the Sea World Marine Park the complex also encompasses a Wet ‘n Wild Theme Park, Village Walk and uShaka Kids World.

Shopping is also an important part of the Durban experience. There are plenty of large shopping complexes with areas such as Grey Street and the Warwick Triangle boasting vibrant local shops and markets and beachfront stalls selling traditional arts and crafts.

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